BOCA RATON, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A blood stem cell transplant recipient met his lifesaving donor at the third annual Gift of Life Marrow Registry Steps for Life 5K held on April 30, 2017 in Boston, Mass. Nearly 600 people attended and witnessed the emotional initial introduction of the pair and they hugged and shed tears of joy.
New York City resident, Cheryl Rosenberg, donated her blood stem cells in June 2015 to lifelong Bostonian 67-year-old Peter Levine. A retired co-owner of Ross Dry Cleaners, Levine was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin T-cell lymphoma in 2014, and no one in his family was a match so he turned to the Gift of Life marrow donor registry.
Rosenberg, 24, who joined the registry at Camp Moshava in Honesdale, Pa. almost seven years ago, said she was overjoyed at receiving the call that she was a match, and never questioned if she would go through with the donation process when Gift of Life reached out to her.
“It was my obligation and absolute desire to help this man as much as I possibly could,” said Rosenberg. “I felt this overwhelming sense of excitement to learn that I could really have an impact on someone’s life.”
Levine, who recently moved to Frederick, Md., feels Rosenberg was brave, kind and giving. “Doing this for me is something I will forever be grateful for,” he said. “Without Cheryl and Gift of Life, I might not be here today celebrating my second life.”
Almost 100 runners and walkers swabbed their cheeks to join the Gift of Life registry in order to help those facing life-threatening blood cancers. All funds raised go toward underwriting the $60 laboratory cost associated with each donor kit. Anyone wishing to join the registry or make a contribution may do so at www.giftoflife.org.
Two more donor and recipient pairs will be meeting for the very first time at Gift of Life’s Annual Gala on May 17, 2017 in New York City.
ABOUT GIFT OF LIFE
Gift of Life Marrow Registry is a non-profit organization headquartered in Boca Raton, Fla. As a bone marrow registry, Gift of Life is dedicated to saving lives and facilitating bone marrow and blood stem cell transplants for patients with leukemia, lymphoma and other blood-related diseases.